Rants, comments, thoughts and funny - mostly funny - on all things Michigan and college football.

If you have ideas, tips, links or pictures for the blog, e-mail us at: MichiganZone at gmail dot com.

Thanks for checking out the M Zone. And if you enjoy the site, please pass the link on to a friend or two. We'd sure appreciate it.

Twitter: @MZoneBlog

Facebook/MZoneBlog

Best Of Tat and Tresselgate

M Zone Videos

Best Of MZone 2.0

Best Of The Original MZone

Tosu Favorites

MZone Archive

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

U-M AD, Fans: Torn Between Two Coaches (aka Being Dave Brandon: The Musical)

While we may kid around here at the MZone, we fully understand how difficult the coaching decision facing Michigan AD Dave Brandon is.  That's because many Michigan fans feel the same way and are torn about what to do as well.

On the one hand, under Rich Rodriguez, the Wolverine offense has become explosive, almost the entire team is coming back, Rich Rod is a proven winner at previous coaching stops and nobody wants to start over from scratch.

And yet...

The Wolverines struggled against the top Big 10 teams again this season, the defense continues to show a lack of improvement and the kicking game is non-existent.

On top of all that, there is one other potential coaching option out there that even the most ardent Rich Rod supporter simply can't ignore.  A name that has to at least be considered.

Yes, this is no time for our funny side here at the MZone.  There's a reason Dave Brandon is struggling with making the correct coaching decision for 2011 and beyond.

In fact, if one were to put what's going on to music* - like say a Michigan blog whose founder has waaaaay too much time on his hands - it might go something like the video below.

So while Brian at MGoBlog put up a post yesterday called Being Dave Brandon, think of this as Being Dave Brandon: The Musical.



* No, that song was NOT on my iPod. I got it off YouTube. I'm hurt by the question.

PS  See!  You see what happens when you lose to your bitter rival SEVEN *&^% YEARS IN A ROW?!  I've become the blogging equivalent of Col. Kurtz at the end of Apocalypse Now.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Aren't we all Michigan fans?

I always thought I was one of the biggest Michigan fans around.  I've gone to the games since I was a kid, always staying until the very end, rain or shine, win or lose.  I graduated from U-M.  I travel to as many away games as I can.  I own more Michigan paraphernalia than one really should past the age of 14.

I can recall the score of games from 10+ years ago more easily than some family birthdays (not yours, honey).  I can tell you the numbers of various Michigan players throughout my lifetime yet I sometimes need to check my address book for an oft-dialed phone number (not yours, honey).  I remember sitting in the Rose Bowl watching Michigan win the National Championship in '98 the way my parents remember sitting in their living room watching man first walking on the moon in '69.

I still ache when I think about the Kordell Stewart pass in '94, still can't believe Charles Woodson's INT against Michigan State in '97 and still get chills when I watch that video clip of Bob Ufer making the Indiana call in '79, even though I've probably seen it a thousand times by now.

And, as some of you may have noticed, I spend way too many hours blogging daily about the school, team and sport I love passionately.

Yet apparently I'm a "hater."

Who knew.

You see, since I returned to blogging I had the audacity, the unmitigated gall*, to question whether or not Rich Rodriguez is the right man to continue leading the Wolverines.  I had the nerve to state that I don't think he's done a great job at the helm thus far.  For that, my Maize and Blue worthiness has been called into question.

And I'm not alone

On message boards and websites, in comment sections and via email, fellow Wolverine fans are being labeled "haters" for disagreeing with those who think unyielding, unquestioned support for Rich Rodriguez is the only one true measure of Michigan-ness.

Well, I call bullshit.

Wolverine fans should be able to express their opinion - no matter which side of the current debate they fall on - without their Michigan bona fides doubted.  Furthermore, the Rich Rod at All Costs Camp doesn't hold any Michigan Moral High Ground.  As much as the righteous indignation would like you to believe it, that "side" isn't more pro-Michigan, its passion not more Maize and Blue.

If that were true, I guess former players like Steve Breaston, Jay Feely, Desmond Howard, Gabe Watson and Alan Branch among others must all be "haters."

Double Bullshit.

Look, people can have different points of view and - wait for it - still be huge Michigan fans who love their school and team.  Regular MZone reader SiC and I disagree passionately about this topic.  But I don't doubt for a second that he bleeds Maize and Blue, nor do I think he doubts my love of all things Michigan.

So let's town down the rhetoric, huh?

Plus, "hater" is so unoriginal.  Seriously.  It's the college football name calling equiv of the Hitler meme and "Stay Classy" all rolled into one.

Thus, can't we simply agree to disagree?  To agree that men of good conscience can love their team and school but still have a different opinion on what the best course of action is to achieving the same goal of getting Michigan back to the top?

I mean, just because I or somebody else isn't happy with Rodriguez, it doesn't mean we're "haters" who don't bleed Maize and Blue through and through.

In the same way, just because someone supports Rich Rodriguez, it doesn't mean they're stupid sunshine-pumping Kool-Aid drinking douchebagging assclowns.

Can't we all get along?


* Would a "hater" really know this quote and where it came from?

It's the uniforms, stupid!

During the days of the Original MZone, BaggyPantsDevil was first a reader then a contributor before real life interrupted his posts here on the MZone. Well, we're happy to announce he's making a return to MZ 2.0 with the tongue-in-cheek post below.

Much has been written the last few years about the struggles of Michigan’s football team. The search for the reasons behind these struggles has created something of a cottage industry amongst us fans. Lloyd Carr left the cupboard bare when he retired because he failed to recruit well. The spread won’t work in the Big Ten. Youth. Angry Michigan Secondary Hating God. Lack of family values. Players being R-U-N-N-O-F-T by harsh language and harsher physical training. GERG. The list is long and each potential reason probably tells you more about its advocate then about why Michigan is having such a hard time transitioning from the Lloyd Carr pro-style era to the Rich Rodriguez spread ‘n’ shred era.

The answer, however, is right before our eyes. It’s the uniforms, stupid. Yes, the uniforms. Look at these things, no stripes, no wings—except on the helmets and what good does that do?--no diamond plating, no snazzy logos, no aggressive or fearsome animal faces with sharp pointy teeth (in spite of the fact that the wolverine is one of the most aggressive and fearsomest animals around). It’s just plain, plain, plain maize and blue. Ho hum. Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz (that’s people falling asleep because it’s so boring and bland).

ChadHenne

Now look at this:

RickLeach

Guess what boys and girls, that’s not the same guy. Not that you would ever know it, but those two number 7’s played 29 years apart. That’s nearly three decades with no uniform change at all. Except for the socks; because that’s how we rolled back in the 1970’s, with tube socks that reached our knees.

So, aside from this small concession to fashion, Michigan’s been wearing the same style of uniform since, what? ‘Nam? Prohibition? The Great War? Yes. Yes. And yes.

Hell, Michigan might as well be wearing something like this with pants intended to look like canvas/sailcloth and a faux leather helmet. You want tradition, that’s tradition.

GreenBayPackers

Even when digitally rendered it looks old. And slow. And that right there is the point; the uniforms look old and slow and therefore they just do not attract the right kind of athletes—young and fast, really fast—to execute Rich Rodriguez’s speed based spread ‘n’ shred.

Michigan

So, who gets kids with speed to spare? Who runs an offense so fast opponents have to fake injuries to slow it down? Who naps through the first half of most of their games and then pours it on in the second half explosion of points because they are so mind-numbingly fast they only need a half to blow you out? Who is the top ranked football team in the country?

You guessed it, these guys:

OregonDucksWings

And just get a load of those uniforms and the colors that have nothing to do with the University of Oregon and the infinite number of possible combinations (I’ll have a white helmet, a yellow jersey, and some grey pants, please). They have wings, too. Only they’re attached to the shoulder the way useful wings should be. And apparently, Oregon is really fast because of it. Before they had wings they had these:

OregonDucksDiamondPlate

Because pick- up trucks with big chrome plated toolboxes are also pretty fast once you get them out on the highway. But since ducks can’t really drive as well as they fly—it’s a webbed foot thing that they’re a little self conscious about so try not to stare—the Oregon teams with the wings are faster than the old diamond plate version. But that old version was still pretty fast.

College football fans have been complaining about Oregon’s ugly uniforms since Nike started our long national nightmare of outfitting college football teams in uniforms designed by the mentally ill. No one likes them and yet elite—and really fast athletes—keep answering “yes” to the question: “Are you willing to run around in fluorescent yellow spandex?” Apparently, we college football fans are too old and slow to get it.

Still not convinced that it takes ridiculously garish uniforms to attract really fast athletes? Behold:

OriginalPatWhite

Yep, that’s Pat White as in the guy we keep hoping Rich Rodriguez finds the next one of. Notice the “fast” font and crazy stripes that run from his neck to his calves. This outfit has “speed” written all over it.

Take a look at this thing. Yes, it hurts your eyes and looking at it for too long will give you a migraine but I think that guy is about to break the sound barrier.

WestVirginiaYellow

Here we have Pat White again blazing past some opponents in even uglier—yet not as fast looking—uniforms. Oregon has yellow uniforms; West--By God--Virginia has yellow uniforms; it doesn’t take an engineering degree from the University of Michigan to figure out what is going on here.

PatWhiteYellow

It should be obvious that if Rich Rodriguez is going to have the same sort of success he experienced at West Virginia, Michigan will have to get with the times and adopt some fast uniforms to attract some more fast recruits—who, hopefully are academically eligible and stick around—to play the speed based style of football Rich Rodriguez employs.

I therefore present the new, improved, RichRod, Spread ‘n’ Shred Pro-Combat uniform system:

RichRod, Spread ‘n’ Shred Pro-Combat Uniform System

You’re welcome.

Think about, we may already have the next Pat White in Denard Robinson. He is already breathtakingly fast while wearing Michigan’s tradition-bound, plod and slog uniforms. Just think how fast he’ll be in this getup. Oh, and the alternate all “maize” ensemble—remember Oregon and West Virginia, people—will go great with a “Maize Out” in the Big House.


But wait, there is more. Here’s the new aggressive and fearsome—and fast—Michigan Wolverine logo. I asked and the internet--via Google--delivered. Notice the rage and the pointy teeth and the swooping arc like it’s pouncing on its prey really fast. Additionally, the whooshing lines on the right look kind of like sharp claws which are almost as scary as sharp teeth. The best part--the part that makes adopting this logo pure genius--is that those lines also resemble the dreadlocks of one Denard Robinson as he zips past pretty much everyone. Maybe Michigan won’t need another Pat White but instead will keep needing another Denard Robinson.

So, there you go, new uniforms, ridiculous color and striping schemes and a logo that will give toddlers nightmares; all the things that are really required to employ a speed based style of football and lift Michigan football up to the next level. After all, Ohio State didn't wear their boring traditional uniform this Saturday and I can scarcely remember the last time they lost to Michigan (maybe they need their Pro Combat gear for games against SEC opponents?).

Again, you’re welcome.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Michigan vs. Ohio State: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

THE GOOD:

* Michigan's much-maligned defense actually forced consecutive 3-and-outs from the Buckeye offense to start the game and held Tosu scoreless in the first quarter. Rumors that nervous Tosu fans were waiting for frogs to fall from the heavens since End Times must certainly be upon us are unconfirmed at this time.

* Michigan's offense actually moved the ball up and down the field much of the first half, taking the ball into Tosu territory 5 of their 6 first half possessions (more about the "but just not scoring" part later)

* Denard's passing looked crisp and on target early (more about the "but his receivers have to catch the *&^% ball!" part later)

* Denard rushed for over 100 yards for the 9th team this season and now has 1,643 rushing yards for the season moving him into 5th place on Michigan's all-time season rushing yardage list

* Safety Jordan Kovacs killed a Tosu scoring drive with a goal line-ish interception and 41 yard return to end the first half

* Rich Rod - knowing his job is potentially hanging in the balance - leaving punter Will Hagerup back in A2 for a violation of team rules.  Anybody think Dantonio would have done that?

* While it may have been there, I didn't see Gerg whipping out Tickle Me Elmo or any other stuffed animals to rub on the faces of our defensive players

* The team played hard and never quit

THE BAD:

* Once again, Denard got injured and missed a good chunk of the game, this time due to dislocated fingers on his non-throwing hand

* After out-gaining Tosu and marching into Buckeye territory 5 of the 6 times they had the ball in the first half, Michigan only had 7 points to show for it.  Speaking of that...

* That 7 points was it for the entire day.  All the chatter about "when the D catches up to the O, watch out!" rings hollow after a performance like this against top competition

* Roy Roundtree.  Players HAVE to make the big plays in the big games.   Those drops in the first half - when the game was still competitive - were absolute killers.

* The defense.  After those early stops and the O's inability to score (or hold onto the ball), the D reverted to form.  Playing a couple good series early on isn't enough.  Tressel took his foot off the gas pedal there in the second half or it would have been worse. 

* The balanced Bucks gained 478 yards: 257 rushing, 221 passing (which - sadly - could almost qualify as being placed in "The Good" for this D since it's under 500.  Yipee!  

* That fat Buckeye fan with the painted face and stupid shit on his head they kept showing in the stands on TV (wait, Yost - WHICH fat Buckeye with shit on his head?)

THE UGLY:

* This was the Wolverines 7th straight loss to the Buckeyes, the longest streak in school history

* Simply "playing hard" isn't enough.  Not at a school like Michigan where the expectation is to play for championships.  Where is the overall improvement, especially on defense?  All this talk about "they're young and everybody's coming back next year" is supposed to make me feel better how?  What on-the-field results suggest that this "returning defense" is going to be significantly better next fall?  Is it the coaching?  The scheme?  The talent?  All of the above?  Whatever it is, they didn't show the improvement as the year progressed (just like '08...just like '09).  

* Those Buckeye uniforms. Seriously, wtf?! Show a little dignity and respect for The Game and wear your "We're Whoring for Nike Unis" during the Youngstown State game in September.

* The turnovers - three more yesterday, continuing a pattern.  That's a killer against crappy teams, let alone against a top 10 school on the road in your biggest rivalry game

* Michigan special teams - Oh, they're "special," all right.  U-M attempted five 4th down conversions because the thought of kicking a FG sends shivers down the spine of Rich Rod and any Michigan fan.  And it's not just the FGs (or lack thereof).  Literally,  it's every phase of the kicking/return game.

* In three seasons, Rodriguez has yet to defeat a Big 10 foe that finished with a winning conference record

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Michigan 7 - Tosu 37: The Aftermath

Well, if there was ever a time to use THIS post-loss healing picture, it's now.


What's that you say? You're still feeling down after Tosu's 7th consecutive victory in The Game? We thought so. That's why Andy found this (although it took a lot of restraint for me to not re-post this video after the embarrassment today):



Okay, folks, there's going to be a lot of chatter out there in the coming days on what happens next for Michigan's program. Might as well get it started here. Does Rich Rod deserve another year?

Discuss.

Michigan vs. Ohio State Open Thread

Well, it would rank up there with the greatest upsets in the storied rivalry.  But we can hope!

And if anybody can help make it happen, it's the speedster below.

Go Blue!


(HT to Mikoyan and his Michigan Exposures for the OT pic!)

Oh they came to Bury Michigan...



HT: KillaB43

Friday, November 26, 2010

From the Editor

In honor of Ohio State week, we'll probably be putting up a bit more and at different times.  So check back often and scroll down to find the hidden nuggets.  And so it's easy to find, here's the One Stop Anti-Tosu Smack Talk Post.

Go Blue!

MZone Travel Advisory for U-M Fans Heading to Columbus

As you may know, the State Department maintains a Current Travel Warnings list.  According the their website, "Travel Warnings are issued when long-term, protracted conditions that make a country dangerous or unstable lead the State Department to recommend that Americans avoid or consider the risk of travel to that country."   On the list are places such as Iraq, Iran, Yemen, Burundi, Sudan, Somalia and other top vacation destinations if you're a soldier of fortune.

Unfortunately, the State Department does not maintain a list of the most dangerous places on earth for visiting college football fans.  If they did, tops on that list would be the hell-hole known as Columbus.  Put it this way, you'd probably feel less threatened visiting the tribal region of Pakistan's border with Afghanistan handing out Danish Mohammed cartoons than walking around Tosu wearing Michigan paraphernalia.  I've personally had some horrible experiences there and Michigan's own Dean of Students actually warned U-M students traveling to The Game in 2006 to be careful.  To my knowledge, this is the only time officials of any school have felt the need to caution its student body to be careful going to a college football game simply to cheer for their team.

And it's not just Michigan fans who have to suffer the abuse.  Ohio State's president was forced to apologize to Texas fans in 2005 for the boorish behavior of Buckeye fans before, during and after the Tosu-Texas game in the 'Shoe.

So, the MZone has put together this little travel advisory video so you can get an idea of some Michigan-Ohio State weekends past.

Know Your Foe - Ohio State 2010

It seems like just a few days ago we were cheering the our guys on to victory over UConn.  But this weekend, painfully or mercifully, the 2010 football regular season ends. As we have seen the previous two seasons under Rich Rodriguez, Michigan enters the all important Ohio State game as decided underdogs. To be blunt, our traditional old school rivalry has developed into a national joke and, sadly, we are the punch line. It hasn't always been that way. This is the 106th edition of THE GAME and Michigan holds a 57-43-6 historical advantage. The Buckeyes have won the last 6 games and 8 of the last 10. Anyway, here is everything you would ever want to know about the angry mob of poorly behaved mouth-breathers from down south.

History: The institution was founded as THE Ohio Agricultural and Mechanical College in 1870 under the ever popular Morrill Act. Later that year, the first group of twenty-four students, including three women, started attending classes. Like most land-grant schools of the era, an internal battle was fought to determine the mission of the school. On one side was the "narrow gauge" crowd, looking to teach subjects strictly related to agriculture and mechanical functions. On the other side was the "broad gauge" crowd looking for a more diversified curriculum that included liberal arts and sciences. As was the case in almost all of these land grant battles, the “broad gauge” side eventually won. In 1878, in light of an expanded focus, the college permanently changed its name to "THE Ohio State University".

But that wasn't the only battle for OSU, because the school was also under fire from other schools within the state of Ohio. Both Miami University and Ohio University were considered more prestigious institutions at the time -- and they were justifiably upset to not be selected as THE state university and the recipient of government allocations. Former U.S. President Rutherford B. Hayes lobbied hard for monies for TOSU and basically browbeat the state legislature to give the new institution a prominent position above the other schools. In the end, the state legislature settled the issue by declaring Ohio State as the only school that would be allowed to offer doctoral degrees. Miami and OhioU would be limited to Bachelor and Masters Programs.

Location: The school is located in Columbus, Ohio, the capital city positioned in the middle of the state. The city - named after the lost explorer and father of new world genocide - is the largest in the state of Ohio. Many find that surprising because the cities of Cleveland and Cincinnati are more well known and home to major league sports teams.

Nickname: They call themselves the Buckeyes. The Buckeye is the official state tree and a creative term of endearment for the pioneers on the Ohio frontier. Apparently, one of the first acts of the original settlers was to cut one of these stinky trees down and they’ve called themselves buckeyes since. The leaves appear in a five-leaf cluster, and the fruit (nut) resembles the eye of a deer, thus the name: buck-eye. As I have stated in the past, the nut is poisonous and should not be consumed by humans or cattle. Regardless of the danger, Ohio State fans love their buckeyes – and it is a very common sight to see them on game days wearing them around their neck as ridiculous tribal necklaces.

Mascot: In 1965, Ohio State students Ray Bourhis and Sally Huber decided Ohio State needed a “game day” mascot and persuaded the athletic council to study the matter. At the time, mascots were commonly live animals brought into the stadium or arena. A buck deer was contemplated but that idea was eventually rejected given the impossible logistics of keeping a deer calm in a large crowd. Instead, a simple (yet heavy) paper-maché buckeye nut was constructed by students and worn over the head and torso, with legs sticking out.

They named him Brutus Buckeye. He made its initial appearance at the 1965 homecoming football game against Minnesota. The heavy costume did not last long and it was soon replaced by a more permanent and durable fiberglass shell. Sometime during the 1970’s they added a baseball cap to the bucknut with limbs. Today Brutus looks like something out of a muppet nightmare, frightens anyone he comes in contact with and angers other mascots into an uncontrollable rage.


Colors/Logo/Helmet: The Ohio State official colors are scarlet and gray. This combination was selected by three students in1878, which happens to be the same year they changed the name to Ohio State. These colors were selected because they were viewed as a “pleasing combination” and they were not being used by any other college. The original suggestion of orange and black was shot down when the students discovered that Princeton also used those colors. This was the closest Ohio State has ever come to being confused with Princeton.

The primary athletic Ohio State logo from 1957 to 1987 was a simple, yet enduring block “O”. Since 1987 they have added a more modern “Ohio State” arched through the middle. They have a ton of secondary logos, the most common combining the classic “O” with a buckeye leaf and nut.
Regardless of what they have worn in the Michigan game for the last two season, the Buckeye's trademark is the distinctive silver bullet helmet design. Until Nike got involved, this classic had been basically unchanged since 1968, making it one of the longest-running continuously-used designs in the NCAA. About the only chance of the scheme is the size of the little buckeye award stickers for class attendance, good behavior and nice plays.

Fight Song: In 1915, OSU student William A. Dougherty, Jr., set out to write the perfect fight song for his school. Dougherty felt that something more exciting than the sad melancholy Carmen Ohio was needed for pep rallies and football games. As a result Fight the Team Across the Field was created. It debuted on October 16th 1915 against Illinois and has not stopped playing since. It is important to note that they had to wait another 4 years before they could play it during a win against Michigan.

This is the main buckeye fight song, although the Buckeye Battle Cry is played after touchdowns. Though the lyrics reference football heroics, the song is used by Buckeye teams of all sports. If you have ever been to an OSU game, their band plays an entire catalogue of toe tapping, yet kidnapped tunes, including the ever popular Hang on Sloopy.

Fight the Team Across the Field

Fight the team across the field
Show them Ohio's here
Set the Earth reverberating
With a mighty cheer
RAH! RAH! RAH!
Hit them hard and see how they fall
Never let that team get the ball
Hail! Hail! The gang's all here
So let's win that old conference now!


Academics: The US News & World Report rankings of undergraduate colleges in America currently places Ohio State as 56thin the country. This places them tied with Fordham, Boston U, Purdue, Georgia, Maryland, and SMU. With 39,000 undergraduates, Ohio State prides itself on offering about any academic or extracurricular opportunity a student could dream of: 170 majors, 800+ student organizations; 120 study abroad programs; internship and research opportunities in every college.
Other Sports: Few schools have the athletic tradition of Ohio State. They are one of only three universities (Michigan and Cal-Berkeley being the others) to have won national championships in the big three sports (football, men's basketball, and baseball).

Since the inception of the Athletic Director's Cup, Ohio State has finished in the top 25 each year. Ohio State has won 57 total college national titles; of these 22 are NCAA championships. Their women's teams have never won an NCAA sanctioned title, but they do have trophies in Cheerleading, Synchronized swimming (24 times) and pistol (2). In 2007, Sports Illustrated called Ohio State's athletics as "The Program" due to the unsurpassed facilities, unparalleled amount of men's and women's sport teams, success and the financial support of an impressive fan base.

Exceptional former athletes at Ohio State include Olympic Gold Medalist Jesse Owens, NBA greats John Havlicek and Jerry Lucas, college basketball coaching legend Bobby Knight, and golf superstar Jack Nicklaus (attended, did not graduate).

Football: It is in football that most people recognize and associate Ohio State. They’ve won five recognized national championships, including most recently the 2002 crown. They’ve won 34 Big Ten titles. They have a combined seven Heisman Trophies including the only two-time winner: Archie Griffin in 1974 and 1975.
They have produced many NFL stars and college and pro football Hall of Famers. Famous names you might recognize include Jim Otis, Jack Tatum, Eddie George, Chris Spielman, Orlando Pace, and Cris Carter. Recent NFL first round draft picks include Chris "Beanie" Wells, Malcom Jenkins, Vernon Gholston, Anthony Gonzales, and Teddy Ginn Jr.

Ohio State is most well known for it's former coach, Woody Hayes. Even to this day, he is worshiped as a god in the state despite an irascible personality and recurring episodes of poor sportsmanship, including the final spectacular explosion in which he punched a Clemson player after he had the audacity to intercept a Buckeye pass during the 1978 Gator Bowl. The identity of the school – and much of the state – is wrapped up in how the Buckeyes do on the gridiron. It is who they are and it unites them, much to the humor (and horror) of the rest of the nation.

Famous alums: As you would expect, Ohio State has a long and somewhat impressive list of famous alums. They have many successful CEOs and political leaders. They have produced two Nobel Peace prize winners and have accumulated 10 Pulitzers. Recognizable names include former UofM President Harlan Hatcher, Tuskegee Airmen Squadron Commander Harold Brown, WWII Medal of Honor winner Robert Scott, Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center co-founder Charles Kettering, Goosebumps author RL Stine, Windex inventor Harry Drackett, Shoney’s founder Alex Schoenbaum, ESPN SportsCenter director Vince Doria, Actress Patricia Heaton, annoying comedian Richard Lewis, Rascal Flatts lead singer Gary LeVox, country singer Dwight Yoakim, Baseball Hall of Fame sportscaster Jack Buck, and the co-founder of Wikipedia Larry Sanger. They also provided an education to serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer. By far the most humorous and ironic name I find on this list is Teflon inventor Roy Plunkett. I can only imagine how many times Jim Tressel has gotten on his knees and thanked him over the years.

As much as Michigan fans don't want to admit it, Bo Schembechler has a graduate degree from Ohio State. He also has a pair of those cute little gold-pants charms they give out for beating Michigan. Barf.

I counted at least four NASA astronauts, there may be more. And although the state of Ohio has produced eight US Presidents (William Henry Harrison, Ulysses S. Grant, Rutherford B. Hayes, James A Garfield, Benjamin Harrison, William McKinley, William Howard Taft, and Warren Harding) -- but none of them attended or graduated from Ohio State.

The Game: For the third season in a row, I have no expectations what-so-ever for this game. If we win, I will be shocked and once again believe in a god that tosses miracles out when he is bored. If we lose, well.... I guess I will just go on like I have for the last decade.

Our defense is not well suited to face a talented and motivated team like the Buckeyes. I can only hope Jim Tressel shows his conservative nature and we score early and often. The reality is if both teams play to their potential -- it won't be close.

Michigan : Not enough
Ohio State : Too Much

Buckeye Business Major

Gee, how clever.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving from the MZone

Because it's Michigan-Ohio State week and our team's not taking the day off, we're not (totally) taking the day off.  Below are a couple appetizers to tide you over before your big meal today.

Have a safe and Happy Turkey Day and we'll see you Friday with another full slate here on the site!

As always, thanks for reading!

The M Zone Crew


*  For the second year in a row, the Ohio State Sell-Outs Buckeyes are once again wearing Nike promotional uniforms for the Michigan-Ohio State game.  Seriously, guys.  That's shit your do for your Youngstown State game, not The Game.

In any event, this year's look features scarlet helmets, scarlet jerseys, gray pants and gray socks.  The Tosu unis are throwbacks intended to honor the '42 Buckeye National Championship team.  "1942" will be written on their gloves (gloves?) and they will have a bronze star on the back of each helmet to honor that team's captain, who was recognized for heroism during the Battle of the Bulge, and others from that team who went off to World War II.

Not to be outdone, and in keeping the theme from this year's defense, some have suggested a decal on Michigan's helmets as well.


* Our buddy Mikoyan has this excellent panoramic shot of the Big House on his photography-themed blog, Michigan Exposures.  Simply awesome!


* Speaking of Michigan Exposures, Mik also went to the Detroit Zoo and snapped the pictures below of the wolverines there.  But as Mikoyan said on his site, "I really wanted to see the wolverines but both of them were sleeping."

Gee, who knew Greg Robinson also worked part-time at the zoo?


* Lou Holtz really was a 'Cock

The Wiz put up this clip of Lou Holtz being a complete a-hole during his days South Carolina head coach.  In it, an intern for a local TV station - mind you, not the person making the decisions - makes Holtz wait - gasp! - an extra couple minutes for the interview to start.  What a 'Cock.

* A Michigan-Ohio State themed video from PMSports.

* By popular request from our readers, here again are Tosu's Sleepy Rappers

* Finally, say it with me Buckeye fans...

O-I-H-O!

Yes, sometimes those four letter words are the hardest ones to spell.


(HT to JW for the pic which, in searching for its original link, I also found on MGoBlog)

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

MZone Exclusive: Gerg Robinson Prepping for Ohio State

In an MZone exclusive, we have obtained secret video of Michigan defensive coordinator Greg "Tickle Me Elmo" Robinson prepping for this weekend's big Ohio State game.

Wallpaper Wednesday - The GAME 2010

Last year on the Spawn of MZone I posted three wallpapers celebrating big Michigan wins over Ohio State. It didn't help change the outcome, but it made me feel better. So I decided to keep the tradition alive


The first one is in honor of former Michigan All American Rob Lytle. He led the 1976 Wolverines to a 22-0 victory over the Buckeyes in Columbus (breaking a four game win-less streak in the series)



The second one is a simple graphical representation of the rivalry. There are 106 helmets. Moving left to right from the first game in 1897, the winner is displayed (a black helmet indicates a tie). The purpose of this is to present a long term perspective for this rivalry.


This one needs no explanation.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

DVR alert : Michigan - Ohio State week

Sadly, in the decade since Jim Tressel arrived and ruined the competitive balance of the Michigan vs Ohio State rivalry, the only real comfort I have been able to feel is the warm after-glow of past victories for my beloved Wolverines. Once again, ESPN Classic has dedicated over 24 hours to THE GAME. Starting on Wednesday night at midnight and running all Thanksgiving Day you can re-watch classic M/OSU games. Edited into 2 hour bite sized pieces for easy digestion. I thought it would be a good to provide a viewing guide for the young Michigan fans that can't remember the last time we won.

Wednesday. Midnight EST
1969. Ohio State at Michigan.

This is the game that started the Ten Year War between Bo and Woody and re-ignited the rivalry into the modern era. This is a classic David vs Goliath story. This classic broadcast is must see TV for any Michigan fan looking for a glimmer of hope for this week and the future for the rivalry. Bo Schembechler's first season as Michigan coach is highlighted by this upset victory over Woody Haye's top ranked Bucks.

Thursday. 2AM EST
1974. Michigan at Ohio State.

Get some sleep. Nothing to see here except Archie Griffin running like the magically slippery gnome he was.

Thursday. 4AM EST
1979. Ohio State at Michigan.

Continue to sleep, unless you want to see a freshman named Anthony Carter score on two long touchdown catches.

Thursday. 6AM EST
1987. Ohio State at Michigan.

Hit the snooze button when the alarm goes off. This was my last OSU game as an undergrad. Buckeye coach Earle Bruce was fired during the week and his inspired team, led by future Detroit Lion All-Pro Chris Spielman, upsets Bo in Michigan Stadium 23-20.

Thursday. 8AM EST
1996. Michigan at Ohio State.

Finally, a real reason to wake up. The 2nd ranked Bucks welcome a mediocre Michigan squad into the 'Shoe with revenge on their mind. Brian Griese drops back, he throws, Shawn Springs trips and Tia Streets gallops into the endzone. Michigan, led by their defense wins 13-9.

Thursday. 10AM EST
2001. Ohio State at Michigan.

Now would be a good time to go outside to do yardwork or help your wife in the kitchen. Jim Tressel makes his first appearance inside Michigan Stadium and stakes his ownership claim with a 26-20 win.

Thursday. Noon EST
2002. Michigan at Ohio State.

Not a bad time for a nap before you sit down and eat your turkey. Tressel leads John Cooper's recruits and a soon to be infamous freshman running back named Maurice Clarrett over the Wolverines en-route to the National Championship. The legend of the sweater vest grows faster than your expanding waistline.

Thursday. 2PM EST
1995. Ohio State at Michigan.

Not sure why ESPN Classic would show this game after they have already broadcast the 1996 classic? These two games (95 & 96) should be considered a double-feature. Would you watch Godfather II before you watched the original Godfather?

Anyway, Tim Biakabutuka out performs Heisman Trophy winner Eddie George with 313 magical yards. A freshman cornerback named Charles Woodson makes his first appearance in the rivalry. Michigan wins 31-23 and Buckeye fans wonder if John Cooper was a good hire.

Thursday. 4PM EST
1997. Ohio State at Michigan.

Lloyd Carr is able to accomplish what John Cooper was never able to do. He takes an undefeated team into THE GAME and wins. To the horror of Tennessee fans, Charles Woodson shows the world why he is a better choice for the Heisman Trophy than Peyton Manning, making great plays on defense, offense, and special teams. Michigan takes the second to last step up the mountain as they climb to the 1997 National Championship.

Thursday. 6PM EST
2003. Ohio State at Michigan.

In the 100th edition of THE GAME is a big celebration as the Buckeyes fall. Chris Perry and Braylon Edwards deliver to Lloyd Carr what will turn out to be his only win against Jim Tressel. Excellent game with lots of back and forth momentum swings. Small confession...this is the last time I have really ever been truly happy with a college football game.

Thursday. 8PM EST
2006. Michigan at Ohio State.

Before the game it was billed as THE GAME OF THE CENTURY. The hype leading up to the game was incredible, as it was the only time in the history of the rivalry that #1 played #2. Then Bo dies on Friday and Troy Smith breaks my heart for the 3rd straight season on Saturday. Avery bitter defeat for the my Wolverines. Four years later I have not been able to re-watch more than one minute of this game. I don't think I will be ready to face it again on Thanksgiving night.

Thursday. 10PM EST
1999. Ohio State at Michigan.

Interesting choice by ESPN Classic here. Ohio State needed to win this game to become bowl eligible (how weird does that sound?). The Buckeyes led the game deep into the second half only to implode. Tom Brady gives the nation a glimpse of what they could expect from him in the NFL, hitting Marquis Walker for the winning touchdown with 5 minutes left. Michigan wins 24-17. The rumbles about John Cooper become very loud in Columbus.

Thursday. Midnight
2005. Ohio State at Michigan.

Time to crawl into bed as this one is quite simply groin-punching-must-miss TV. Michigan blows a 21-12 lead with less than 7 minutes left. The final 88 yard drive is engineered by Troy Smith after Lloyd Carr decided to punt from the Buckeye 34 yard line. The bad guys win 25-21 and once again sing Carmen, Ohio at Michigan Stadium.

Friday. 2AM EST
2000. Michigan at Ohio State.

The M/OSU marathon ends on a positive note. This is "the last straw" game for John Cooper. Anthony Thomas and Drew Henson guide the Wolverines to a 31–12 lead and they hold on to win, 38–26. The final nail in the Cooper coffin is nailed by Henson when he scored on a 4th down boot leg keeper with 1;16 left to play. Cooper is fired the next day.

Jim Postor

Please tell me this guy isn't a small college football coach looking for a job when the real Jim Tressel retires.

Brutus Buckeye finds a job

We'd heard the rumors: after getting his ass kicked by the OU Bobcat early this season in a vicious pre-game assault, Brutus Buckeye had suffered PTSD and started drinking.  Then, sometime last week, he simply wondered away from the Ohio State campus and hasn't been seen since.

Until now.

Brutus Buckeye was spotted this week at a Pilot gas station outside Toledo where he was bumming money from stopping motorists and working as a "squeegee guy" for spare change.

How sad.


(HT to Deadspin where I saw the pic)

MZone PSA: All your Tosu trash talk needs in one convenient location

On a strictly football level, Michigan fans are hard pressed to talk much smack as we head toward our annual showdown with Ohio State this Saturday.  We haven't beaten Tosu since 2003 and this year could be especially ugly as The Game is in Columbus and the Wolverines arrive with the most porous defense in its 131 year history.

And yet The Game demands smack talk.  I mean, did Buckeye fans shut their pie holes back in the glorious John Cooper Era (*sigh*) when U-M used to beat them year in and out, ruining their national title hopes at every turn?  Of course they didn't.

Nor shall we.  But what's a Michigan fan to do now that the tables have turned?

Take a page from what passed for political campaigns during the recent mid-term elections: don't argue the facts, go negative.

Thus, as a public service to our readers, we have taken the time to compile some of our favorite anti-Tosu material we've posted here on the MZone so that it may be used as smack talk this week.  Best of all, due to our current defensive situation, none of it has absolutely anything to do with football!  Simply send one of the links below to that annoying Buckeye in your life.  When they respond with football facts and their run of Big 10 titles, laugh that deep laugh when you realize you're getting under someone's skin...then send another link.  Continue as needed.

Same goes on the message boards.  Buckeyes, like termites, tend to lurk just under the surface.  Sure, you may think the mods have gotten rid of the pests, but they're there.  So link away on your message board of choice and watch them run back to theirs, all pissed because they can't believe a team that hasn't won in C-bus since 2000 has the audacity to be talking shit.  

Thus, until we can compete with Tosu on the football field again, without further adieu, behold our special early holiday gift to our MZone readers.

You're welcome!

Sincerely,

The MZone Staff

THE BUCKSTACHE

No smack talk with a Buckeye would be complete without bringing up The Buckstache, a term coined by the MZone back in 2006 after a rash of legal problems by Tosu fans, players and players-to-be -- who all sported facial hair previously known as a mustache before the birth of the Buckstache.

So do your research and click on the tag in the Buckstache post above to get other examples. If you use one of these and your target Buckeye replies with something like "That was X years ago!" remember: facts are for pussies.  Then send him a pic of another Buckstache aficionado.

Remember this guy?

BROKEBUCK MOUNTAIN

Sometimes it's just too easy.  Case in point: this picture from an MZone Caption Contest. Simply send the pic below and name their mom, one of the Tosu starting players - or even coach Tressel - as the person possessing the naked rump sticking out of the car.  Tasteless?  You bet.  Anything to get them so enraged they momentarily forget the rump sticking out of the car could aptly be called "Michigan's Defense."



PHOTOSHOP PHUNNIES

Nothing like a good doctored picture to ruffle a few Buckeye feathers.  Below are a few from our storied 'shop past:

ED. NOTE: When your Tosu friend emails back saying, "This is fake" stick to your guns.  "No, it's not."  Act indignant.  Let them waste their day on Google sending you different varieties of the same pic.  Swear it's obvious that those are Photoshopped, these anti-Tosu pics are the originals.  Repeat.

'Shopped?  Yes.  Can you imagine him at the 'Shoe? Also yes.


OK, this might not be Photoshopped.
Buckeye Middle Class Housing

Buckeye Upper Class Housing (aka Tressel's Place)

WOODY

Like mocking Bear in 'Bama, you're messing with fire here - which is why you're reading this post.  Remember: a) worst defense in history of Michigan football b) have lost the last 8 out of 9 against Tosu.  You have nothing else.  It's time for the nuclear option. So:

Hey, remind me again what happened in Woody's last game?  Oh yeah...


Need more? Send video...



Still need more?  Fine.  Order a Clemson jersey with the name/number of the player Woody sucker punched.  Or send a picture of this guy standing in front of this sign.  Buckeye fans love it.



THE BEST DAMN BAND IN CENTRAL OHIO!

Tosu folks love their band.  And why shouldn't they this time of year?  They look just like the Salvation Army folks standing outside the mall.

Will play "Hang on Sloopy" for a buck!
After mocking their uniforms, stick the dagger in by reminding them that that script Ohio they're so proud of was copied off the Michigan marching band who performed it in the 'Shoe FOUR YEARS BEFORE THE TOSU BAND did for the first time in 1936 (yes, it's true).

M Marching Band performs "Script Ohio" in the 'Shoe in '32

Etc. Etc. Etc.

Hop around the site a bit, you'll find more.

Like this nutritious meal in C-bus...

Alphabet Soup in Columbus

And Uncle Buck(eye) (doctored because it was some reader's actual uncle)...


And the SHOWGIRLS of pro-Tosu videos...



FINALLY

Just to prove you're not a hater, send them this pic of the only "Fuck Michigan" picture officially endorsed and approved of here at the MZone.